Lower back and stomach pain can have many different causes from just being constipated to a possible aneurysm in the abdomen. If you have pain in your stomach and back for longer than a few days, there may be something going on that needs checking out. The first step is to understand the different causes that affect these areas and know when it is time to see a doctor.
Causes of Lower Back and Stomach Pain
Constipation has been noted to be one of the biggest reasons behind stomach pain. If you have not had a bowel movement for 3 days or longer, this could be the source of your pain.
Symptoms include bloating, nausea, loss of appetite and sometimes even vomiting.
This can be taken care of right at home if it is mild. Medical attention may be needed if the constipation lasts longer than 5 days and is not relieved with home remedies.
Bad cases of Pre-menstrual syndrome or PMS can cause lower back pain and pelvic cramping.
Other symptoms include: mood swings, acne, headaches and breast tenderness. If you suffer from PMS, you may have nutritional deficiencies, not enough exercise and stress.
Often, simple lifestyle adaptations can bring relief from this condition.
An ovarian cyst can cause back and lower abdominal pain near the pelvic area. The pain can even run down the thigh. An ovarian cyst is a fluid filled sac on the ovary. They usually occur after ovulation and go away at the end of the monthly cycle.
Some doctors may choose to monitor them if they do not go away via ultrasound. Generally speaking, ovarian cysts are harmless, but some do require surgery or biopsy.
When you suffer from kidney stones, the pain often is felt in the mid to lower back and around the flank area of the stomach.
Kidney stones are made of crystals and calcium and block the flow of urine through the kidney and ureter. This can cause a very severe “colicky” type pain and needs to be evaluated by a doctor.
An appendix is a small tube that lies at the bottom of the large intestine. It can become inflamed and cause very sharp lower back and stomach pain. It also causes fever, nausea and vomiting.
Appendicitis is usually treated with surgery and requires immediate treatment to prevent rupture. A ruptured appendix can have serious complications or even be life-threatening.
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
The condition starts out as an infection in the reproductive system, usually a sexually transmitted infection. Untreated, it can cause serious inflammation and damage to the structures and even infertility.
Symptoms include lower back and stomach pain, fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and pain with sexual activity.
Pyelonephritis is the medical term for one type of kidney infection. The infection is bacterial and caused by an untreated or very severe urinary tract infection that travels upwards into the kidney.
The symptoms include stomach pain, back pain, fever, vomiting, pain with urination and sometimes a headache.
It needs to be treated with antibiotics immediately and if left untreated can have serious complications.
An inflamed prostate, known as prostatitis, can cause low back and stomach pain. This is often caused by an infection, usually E. coli.
The main symptoms of prostatitis are fever, chills, low back pain, urinary urgency, urinary frequency and stomach pain. If you have symptoms, it needs to be treated right away and complications can be serious.
The tiny compartments that contain the sperm, the seminal vesicles, can become inflamed. If prostatitis is left untreated, the infection can spread to the area and cause this condition. It can also happen all by itself with no known cause.
The symptoms include back pain, stomach pain that is steady and does not go away.
Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm
Sharp pain in the lower back and stomach can be brought about by an abdominal aortic aneurysm. It is caused by an area of the aorta that runs through the middle of the body becoming weak and bulging out.
If this ruptures, it can be life-threatening and needs immediate attention. People with this pain often complain of pulsing near the navel, sharp stabbing pain and the abdomen is tender to touch. If you have all of the above symptoms, call 911 right away.
If you are pregnant and experience lower back and stomach pain that does not go away, it could be a sign of ectopic pregnancy.
This happens when the fertilized egg does not implant in the uterus, but in the tubes. It can also adhere to the ovary or inside the abdominal cavity.
This is a medical emergency because the tube can rupture. If you have pain in these areas, watch for bleeding, dizziness, severe pelvic pain and faint feeling.
If you are experiencing miscarriage, you may feel pain in the lower back and pelvis or abdomen. There isn’t always an explanation, but it may be caused by genetic defects in the fetus, a uterine issue or trauma.
Other symptoms include bleeding, cramping, contractions, absence of heartbeat in the fetus and dropping hormone levels.
When to See a Doctor
In order to detect serious internal issues that need medical attention, you need to seek immediate medical attention if you begin to have severe lower back and stomach pain with the following:
Blood in the stools
Pain with urination
Tenderness in the abdomen
Recent abdominal injury
Lower back and abdominal pain lasting longer than a few days